We know that children can sometimes be a nuisance. It’s just that we refuse to admit it. And yet, maybe the larks of these kids make us love them even more. The same thing happens with the protagonist of the short film ‘The Performance‘, who cannot anticipate the small irony or the emotional slippage of some 11-year-old students, bursting into a deep confession that illustrates his aspiring artist personal drama. Without pushing the project to an over-sentimental area, director Raphael Frost Gonzalez talentedly balances the drama of his short film, depicting the mechanism by which human perception alters or reconfigures the real significance of an event. The result can be categorized as a comedy, but this short film is far from being a „forced”, slightly shrill one, similar to a classic American comedy, since it uses authentic elements, capturing a recognizable context in which the children’s (seeming) innocence unpremeditatedly triggers laughter. From this perspective, the protagonist embodies a general typology any viewer can empathize with, since the central context of the project, based on the enormous differences in perception between an adult and a child, marks a conjuncture that (almost) everyone has encountered.

 

When Marvin tries to talk about his life as an actor in front of a class during the career day, his speech may not resonate with the 11-year-olds’ horizon of comprehension. In addition, the teacher’s rather passive-aggressive attitude doesn’t help Marvin to control his emotions.

 

We could say that one of the sub-textual mainstays of this project is the more or less clichéd idea of ​​life as a performing stage. However, the director’s intention is not to target such a pretentious core. But that doesn’t mean that the short film signed by Raphael Frost Gonzalez is lacking in depth, despite its comical interface that illustrates both a hilarious and delicate situation. In addition, the strategy of filming the entire project in a single porthole-shot, in order to highlight the authenticity and the spectator’s personal perception of the context (congratulations to the actors!), increases the final effect placed on the border between laughter and compassion towards the protagonist. Thus, ‘The Performance’ is a kind of dramedy, an attractive, bittersweet short film managing to put viewers in front of a mirror where they can see themselves on the big theatre stage of the world which is, in fact, our own destiny.

Share: